The Voices of the New Testament: A Conversational Approach To The Message Of Good News
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While it is all concerned with the story and significance of Jesus Christ, the New Testament is a collection of twenty-seven books, by at least nine different authors, and addressed to individuals or groups in several different locations over a number of years. The books adopt very different styles, and they often appear, at least on the surface, to be talking about different issues. They are written in the heat of the missionary activity of the early church, in its living, ever-changing context.
This diversity adds richness to our understanding of the Christian faith and its fundamental beliefs – but how might we discover coherence in the teaching of the New Testament without imposing a false synthesis on it, or distorting the emphasis of any individual writer?
In a novel approach, Derek Tidball presents a round-table conversation between the New Testament authors that both reveals how much they have in common and permits them to make their distinctive or even unique contributions. An imaginary ‘chair’ presides over the discussion, and an ‘observer’ enables further commentary on selected topics.
Tidball’s chosen integrating theme is the ‘good news’, ‘the gospel about Jesus the Messiah’ (Mark 1:1). He explores why we need the gospel; the person and work of Christ, who is the gospel; the nature of salvation; how we respond to and live out the gospel; and the ultimate fulfilment of the gospel in terms of a new creation.